The Necessity of Conversion

Tonight I finished David Wells little book, Turning To God: Reclaiming Christian Conversion as Unique, Necessary, and Supernatural. Wells does a superb job unpacking the doctrine of regeneration and conversion as conceived biblically, sharply distinguishing it from definitions within other disciplines like psychology or in other religions like zen buddhism.

I was challenged by Wells treatment of the history of thought on conversion and the controversy surrounding it. It reinvigorated my own conviction of this important biblical doctrine, and I commend the work to you for your own reading.

It starts with a bang! Here’s the opening paragraph:

“Christianity without conversion is not longer Christian, because conversion means turning to God. It involves forsaking sin, with its self-deifying attitudes and self-serving conduct, and turning to Christ, whose death on the cross is the basis for God’s offer of mercy and forgiveness. Jesus was judged in our place so that god could extend his righteousness to us. conversion occurs when we turn from our waywardness and accept Christ’s death on our behalf. Without conversion, Christianity is no longer belief in Christ’s substitutionary work, grace is no longer the unmerited and unalloyed action of God without whose work sinners die, and God is no longer the covenanting God whose purpose is to form a people for Christ as numerous as the stars (Eph. 2:11-22; Heb.11:12).”

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